Refresh my soul, let the doors of you, open to Peace. Let everything within breathe Grace. May our mind lean on Him whose mercies never fail, they are new every morning. Great is His faithfulness. Greater than all my bounteous lack. His power in my weakness, oh the fact of that. Not I but Christ in me, not the dark, but the Light in me. ReNew every morning soul, stay blest.
I just watched Trevor Noah on the recent horrific Floyd killing/ aftermath: and what struck me deep as I moved away from his ‘tipping point & domino effect’ is that
this is not just one isolated piece of reactivity or discrimination. This is the whole of Humanity reaching a ‘Tipping Point’ in a variety of ways and we are going to have to watch our reactivity like never before. All of us.
Saw this on Instagram👇
I do not know what to think, leave alone say. This did not happen in my country, but this is our earth. When a scooterist got beaten up by two cops here (he was out at Lockdown) everything in us recoiled.
We scream out loud now and then at things we do not understand and something tells me our thresholds are being lowered like never before : courtesy Covid and all, we are maddening maddened. We are losing immunity to dis- ease and moral code. Something deep within our morale is losing Core social skills. We are raped of Reserves, of Goodness, Justice. Grapes of wrath grow well in our Vineyards grown for Peace.
There’s this though: it is in Times like these that perhaps most men women and children have sat in silence and stared at that thin fine line between Good and Evil. Here we as a Race see that the colour of our bones is the same ash, and too, that Human Conduct has no colour. No allow me to re-state that. Human conduct does have a colour, the colour of shame. It’s there where there are humans, and we must spend the rest of that decade in apology, because humans intrinsically know what is right and what is wrong. We know casteism and dowry are evil practices, that murder is sin. Female infanticide and Sati deaths, honour killings, these debase our society that so aches to progress.
If we are Dominoes just waiting for something to impact us… if we have zero foundation within that will hold us strong no matter the tide, then the Tipping Point will come easy, it will arrive real quick in ways we wouldn’t believe if someone were to warn us. People will kill each other for a coin, a loaf of bread, a glass of water, if that hasn’t happened already. Rage will become a norm, racism as common as common cold.
If we have no Soul Spine, we are in for a mega crash as a Planet. The killers we condemn out there, are perhaps in all kinds of intensity around us already. Or within..
yesterday this time it* went through parts of Bangalore city, it rattled panes, shook houses; 10+ hours earlier they heard it in Canberra….
a ‘*Supersonic Boom that our Ground & Air forces here in India are puzzled at. It felt like an earthquake in the air around and deep within…. it’s bass explosive rumble was not like any Jet, not like anything I’ve ever heard, “….no it is Cyclone Amphan air pressure impact; no no we do not know...”
As a Race all of a sudden, we do not know much except mutual questions. The life we knew will not return, but things that offended do not seem to offend now. We as Humans are looking deeper; Prayers are welcomed. Safe is where? Peace is an Essential Commodity like never before. Kabooms are even neighbourly. Tonight if some of us see Clouds throbbing in Neon (actually have seen these from our terrace 5years ago; thought it was local Rock Concert laser beams going hyper high) we may shrug it off as yet another 2020 event. As a Cluster of Survivors we are gaining immunity to bad news, Shock absorbers all kicking in.
What’d Hitler have done; or any of those big boys of war? This is the Grandma of War, and she is Villain non parallel and yet Kah-boom!- she has changed us into Hermits for Peace like never before in the History of the human race.
Neighbours begin to nod at each others neighbours; old ‘enemies’ send you WhatsApp forwards, they appreciate your potted plants seen in Instagram Story. Songs are sung by people with no vocal gifting, it’s even beautiful, meaningful. We are losing our Shy. We do not mind being photographed without our glasses. We still care about appearances though, we give us new haircuts. We yearn to not hesitate to shake hands, hug. That’ll be rare. That’ll be rare. But we will go on. We will wash our hands and feet and face relentlessly-relentlessly wash veggies, sanitize phones and c.cards …. but we will go on. We will look up at the sky and expect comets meteors and flares. If there are more Boombooms we will just not panic like we used to about exams and traffic jams. We are tougher than we are shocked, we are now closer to the Unknown than we’ve ever been. No, no. We are not caterpillars nor monkeys. We live we die we experience positivity, patient endurance and peace mid chaos. We work it. We tell our kids & friends on phone and in market places or between days of the week… be strong we say. We mean it. We wake up early to stare at the sky…. how its’ Light kills Virus. Our babies ask Existential Questions we no longer shush. We wonder too. Where are we from? Where do we go next…
There are no alternative activities to these Askings. We ask on. We understand each others’ questions better. We go quiet- no one thinks that odd. Not if we wear a wrinkly scarf, uncombed hair. You’re friendlier if.
All these things. We’ve changed so hard we can not go back. We are freer than we’ve ever been as a mass of individuals. Yes we die, we are afraid, we cry. But we are sweeter, nicer, kinder, tenderer. We share the Highest Common Factor- Human Frailty. This mutes Snobs. We are all Untouchables. How that looks if you draw us all is we are these Masked Breathers. We are changed into Changelings in the Twinkling of an Eye; it arrived like a Thief in the night. It took our Breathe-Easy days and Ka-Boom! Its turned our 7 billion into 2 alpabets: Us, however divided, in the face of Existence. We are Unstoppable Seekers of the Peace of God.
know you are Loved by a Force you cannot see, but One that sees you. Regret nothing but what you deprive yourself of tomorrow. Love generously, live every minute, I mean LIVE. Lockdown all noise that Intrudes. We deserve more than we give ourselves. You are No.1 and should be in your list of beautiful things this side of heaven. You are precious, more than trees and leaves of all the pages ever written anywhere on earth, aren’t you?
Aren’t you? Look deep in the eyes of your heart and read the preciousness with which you were created. See how Someone died so you and I could live free as we do, children of an earth almost too blest. Aren’t we, too blest? Warrior friend mine, yes you,
I write this with an urgency I do not understand: there’s a day to live for today and you and I must excel all expectations to just be normal. We ride above the boring norms we chalked out for yesterday… eh warrior please let go of yesterday’s habits, yesterday’s nightmares, let go, let go of tomorrow’s predictions, let’s be who we were, we are, will be… warriors in love and Peace: nothing missing, nothing broken-
we were made for days as these in a Love that forever breathes heavens’ brand of peace Warrior, please.
You are seeing Ads. here? No, they are not endorsed by me nor am paid for, for them in any way 🙂. My apologies for inconvenience and I pray for the day Essentials will be truly free. I know, that’s asking a bit much. I love WordPress and the ability to Blog no matter what; also that through this medium, to have the ability to read your presence.
Did this 👇painting last year, after seeing Souza’s Christ( see below 2nd painting for also, his grand son’s Street graffiti of Goan woman praying?)
Art is a language all it’s own. When I’m silenced from society and ask myself what I’m at, is when Painting kicks in. It’s like dancing for me, or cooking a designer meal. It’s my dialect. There’s grace, disgrace, pain, hopeless hope.
Today, Palm Sunday and India and everywhere potentially exploding with Covid, or not…. it’s that kind of day again I’m looking within. Some call it prayer,
you can label it, morph it, strip it down, it’s still the fact of reaching out to the One that made me: the Act of Love that consummates my presence here, the Fact of His Life…. when I think of that, there is little else that overcomes. And I need some overcoming, Now.
Am grateful for the Gifts we are given at this time. Gifts that say it better than we might. These are the Journals of our Times. These are the trails we leave behind, our blood prints that might be a new kind of beautiful for generations to follow. What we are at.. in the Now, matters. These emotions, questions, they capture human responses, and sometimes responses are all we’ve got to secure our eternities.
Souza captures Christ with that Palm Leaf; you might call it grotesque almost, but this is how pain looks in any given century.
His grandson’s Graffiti details the folded palms of a Goan woman. What’s she asking? What are we asking. globally, individually: are there immediate answers, is there Beauty in the Ashes of hopes, prayers and dreams,
what’s Christ got to do with contemporary existence, does God care I may ask. What do we do now:
what is this that causes peace when I pause, lean, go still…. my emotional palms folding in,
is Humanity beautiful when we are most vulnerable,
do we ask questions of immortality, here, like this, now,
Life wasn’t ever permanent. Now maybe is all we’ve got.
…and had the feeling we’d seen him over and over in places around. Take a look.
A million things go through the mind as Eye receives images of this tiny creature’s liquid bones in the confines of that tube…. playing solitaire, 😃 but more! He’s hoarding……! Think we’re the only ones who think so? Nah its there in comments already, and how I LOVE this Personality..
he’s playing Humans, in the winter of their spirit. He knows the weather forecast, he knows he will get hungry, and he knows the ways of his kindred creature, he is aware of exactly how to stash, scramble, and twirl around in a tight corner. He races time. He does not give up or stop. When he cant take anymore, he adapts! He’s built for duress, is creative and quick no matter the route/ the confines, he stays cute. Notice he is in the presence of a mightier force than himself (the Lab!), does he know? Maybe, but he’s intent on fulfilling basic instinct.
There is a major difference between him and us though, many.
He doesn’t have a human mind, for one.
I’m guessing we can fare better than a Hamster, you think…? 😅
If you’re looking for some music, this also happening @ my home, “Good good Father,” do listen …HERE
Streets, people, trees, blossoms, faces, places, time, family,
What you see, sees you-
quieting thought that I can effect change, mood, laughter, peace…I am the music of my words, the harbinger of joy, yeah I can re arrange the furniture, heal, reveal a Well Spring of things and streams you & I own deep within, do we know, do I know
how wide I am created, to…..
…to bring all these gifts to a day like this…. do I, do we know.
Today is that Gift we asked for: tiny seconds tripping together, they warned last night of Dawn, and here we are, 24 hours closer to answers we task for;
Today is a Gift of colours we mayn’t notice in sill and (coffee?) swirls, in each others’ eyes, or our miles of sometimes hesitant smiles;
Today is a Gift which will never return: as we read this, Its arms tick tiny songs in ears tuned to fears, but now and then, we are turned anew by each others’ joy…if we would..
Today is a Gift, a Prophecy of Life in the bones of soul; how quick we can keep Its peace… like beautiful Feet, running to ourselves/ to each other yelling the good news, that we are beloved of the Father;
Today is a Gift, only you & I know to courier, to our depths or anothers’: gifts of mercy and forgiveness, the holding of a sister/brother/nation in prayer;
Today is a Gift, only you and I and we can unwrap- tremble with excitement, with relief, with hope and patience! I can die down in the horrific power of belief that healing is dead, but I believe-
I believe that you and I are Pulse and Breath in these streets and doors and walls we built: and today we must Lock-down the dark and wait for eyes anew: then see what Gifts we can give even ourselves, that cannot be bought or broken:
Gifts- stubborn confident that we are still here for a reason: we are Survivor-Mutants -of-health ay, wealth of True Love, e’en in the presence of the absence of evil:
and these Gifts of the Day, running tripping Happy Feet of the Good news of God’s Unshakeable Kingdom of Peace:
They are Life, more than we know, more than we know..
Last month I wanted to look closer at this legendary masterpiece of Auguste Rodin’s, and found that it was a Type of Dante’s Poem, gazing at the portals of hell…. am I wrong?
There wasn’t time to dive deeper into that, we’ve all been flung a little further in at a new kind of emo/physical torment with Virus related issues. We’ve never been closer, in this new kind of loneliness, all of us together in a new kind of isolation, we’re like a Shadow of yesterday going into tomorrow, staring at Us all as through a glass, gazing at each other as if we’ve never seen us before, sans all the action. It’s a new kind of day. We’re unafraid of words we used to be afraid of. A friend who never asks for prayer, asked. What are we all thinking as we face another 24 hrs, an extended Lock down, or more news coming in from frontlines, where people are facing way more than emptied food shelves….
I got this ( pl see below Thinking Man). It isnt all gloomy. In fact, in it’s own heart rending way, the following words change me….
Pray for Italy🙏🏻
“From Dr. Julian Urban, a 38 year-old serving in a hospital in Lombardy, Italy:
—LIGHT IN A DOCTOR’S DARKEST NIGHTMARE—
Never in my darkest nightmares did I imagine that I would see and experience what has been going on in Italy in our hospital the past three weeks. The nightmare flows, and the river gets bigger and bigger. At first, a few patients came, then dozens, and then hundreds. Now, we are no longer doctors, but sorters who decide who should live and who should be sent home to die, though all these patients paid Italian health taxes throughout their lives.
Until two weeks ago, my colleagues and I were atheists. It was normal because we are doctors. We learned that science excludes the presence of God. I laughed at my parents going to church.
Nine days ago, a 75-year-old pastor was admitted into the hospital. He was a kind man. He had serious breathing problems. He had a Bible with him and impressed us by how he read it to the dying as he held their hand. We doctors were all tired, discouraged, psychologically and physically finished. When we had time, we listened to him.
We have reached our limits. We can do no more. People are dying every day. We are exhausted. We have two colleagues who have died, and others that have been infected. We realized that we needed to start asking God for help. We do this when we have a few free minutes. When we talk to each other, we cannot believe that, though we were once fierce atheists, we are now daily in search of peace, asking the Lord to help us continue so that we can take care of the sick.
Yesterday, the 75-year-old pastor died. Despite having had over 120 deaths here in 3 weeks, we were destroyed. He had managed, despite his condition and our difficulties, to bring us a PEACE that we no longer had hoped to find. The pastor went to the Lord, and soon we will follow him if matters continue like this.
I haven’t been home for 6 days. I don’t know when I ate last. I realize my worthlessness on this earth. I want to use my last breath to help others. I am happy to have returned to God while I am surrounded by the suffering and death of my fellow men.
Pls pray for Italy”
And may I add, pray for our neighbours, each other, ourselves. For international wisdom and tact as we go forward.
What started two years ago with a few young people across Bangalore city, today was just Family, oweing to ‘Janata Curfew’: people’s voluntary curfew where every Indian stays indoors all day till 9pm this evening.
So we got together for today: our daughter Vihan who made our Haven call come true with her heart of steel and love for Jesus & every soul ever; our son Johann (I’ve written about him here, he’s recovering so well. Thankyou all for prayers). There’s the one and only NoelJeff without whom this family would be an awkward lot. Our second daughter KitsyRuth, the Bijli(electricity) of us (and Chef!). Then me: still catching my breath from some weird sort of illness- that’s-not-Covid🥴: glad for the grace of God that’s brought us through a strange 365×2 days, hallel! It was worth it all, to watch Family grow this way. Do join every Sunday, Subscribe for Updates, Share with people who might appreciate company, comment so we know you’re there…
Trusting these Vids are understood for the purpose of Sharing God’s Comfort. None of us are Pros., just extremely ordinary -everyday- veggie- chopping- hassled over nitty gritty- kind of people with an extraordinary Father who loves us all no matter what we think of Him, no matter how dark the road might seem. You are not alone.
Masi Kuma rang our door bell, 20 minutes before the 2001 earthquake in the neighbouring State of Gujarat rocked our 5 storeyed apartment building in Mumbai, India.
I lugged both our little ones down three flights of stair case, to the one wide-open window over first floor landing.
It was like the deadly thing Uncle Masi had been prophesying all December; was he surprised?
I was. I’d rubbished his forecasts about the Malad Fault running right below our Building he said, and how at any time It could decide to do what Earth faults do.
“We survive by sheer chance, y’know!” He’d muttered 20 minutes before we quaked! Epicentre was miles away in Gujarat, what we had was just .. aftershocks?
I was tired of his imagery… and it was pretty vividly decorated, his whole body swaying from side to side, showing me how we (Mumbai) escaped each quake, and that there were many to come, he muttered, his eyes gleaming with the tragedy already.
When Gujarat was hit, Uncle M. asked me why we were in Mumbai at all. He was leaving with his wife and son, they were going to Australia and he was at least happy about that. “As it is, this city Mumbai is just made-up reclaimed land, oh we are not a proper island made of rock, you know that, nah?”
Mrs. M. his wife sighed.
She loved Mumbai city, she’d lived here all her life: what place was safe on earth, she said in the flat tone of one who now forgot how to hope.
Their kind-faced son Raji, a curious meld of his parents + 24×7 half smile- Raji looked forward to the prospect of a ‘nice Indian girl’ in Australia, I wondered about that…
“Oh and there are other things,” he said.
I didn’t ask, but after all our quakes died down, Aunty Masi told me their son Raji worried about allergens, apparently caused by holes in the Australian sky, that’d affect migrants more than others. Uh?.”What…? ” I asked.
Aunty M. screamed, “Don’t ask! They’ll not stop talking about it.”
I didn’t understand.
They were buying up Anti- histamine, Ayurvedic powders…swallowing vitamins…
why were they migrating then?
It was puzzling. I had my own busyness with two little ones gearing for PreSchool.
On the day they were leaving Uncle Masi came in and sat a few minutes. “Thing is, I know this city will not stand anymore pressures,” he said with hooded eyes.
Oh my. He loved it too. Yes, here in this sprawling maddening reclaimed city called the Gateway of India, he’d met Aunt in college, here they’d got married, had their life …
He nodded. “Beta (child), run while it’s safe. You got your kids and nice husband to think of. Just imagine a city this vast, in any quake, or war. Or epidemic. Specially an epidemic.“
Years have gone by, our Faults all over India show up now and then.
I hope Uncle M. and family survive and thrive where they ran to.
We moved from Mumbai back home to Bangalore City, South of India when there was a job change;
today, we face a new threat, Coronavirus.
For few years here now, I’ve been running from my cousin-in-law, Letti- she’s like Uncle Masi, a Prophet of Doom:
to never be visited if there’s an epidemic, or news of anything that triggers alarm, even rise in price of the onion.
The last time she & I had a terrible meet it was about Chikun-guniya fevers. Letti was at her worst- best. She had the symptoms she said, it was worse than labour pain. I went home and actually got the virus. It ate my thoughts, ran fire down my spine, then turned my cells to batter.
When Dengue hit our city, I refused to answer Letti’s calls. She left messages about Papaya leaf extracts for cure and said to please not hang around in any garden, even our tiny balcony not till 5 pm, these mosquitoes wore black and white pin stripes in their evil legs and to wash every vegetable with soap. Not eat outside, not go anywhere unless you had to.
Then H1N1 (or something else?) arrived; cousin Letti ganged up with a WhatsApp group and I hadn’t the presence of mind to block myself from grouping.
By now Letti & Co. were a force to deal with: they were making powders to drink first thing in the morning, cleansers, even types of prayers that went in a chain link and God forgive you if you ignored that link to seven others. Letti and her group knew if you’d read them, WhatsApp blue ticks gave you away, “why didn’t you respond? Get the powder! Tell your neighbours.“
This was worse than neighbour Tupperware women who made you buy oversized Salwar Kameez you “couldn’t get anyplace else for their rates.”
After that, Letti ached about drought, non-existent rains, farmers, and the rises of prices. I thought life would have worn her out by now, but Coronovirus begins.
This time, I’m worrying,
but Letti isn’t calling like before.
Is she sick? Scared to ask, I worry that her forwards are too spiritual these days, about the end of our times, and how we must not be afraid. Why waste breath worrying….?
We met two days ago, she not wearing any mask like some other friends are, and no familiar odor of sanitizer: her eyes large with peace, no panic.
What’s with you Letti? but I don’t ask.
She spills it.
There was a dream in which she gave away masks.”These masks are my prayers,” Letti whispers, like a Corona- Whisperer.
“It is all in our attitude.Fear, anxiety, these things break down immunity.”
I search her face for negativity but there’s only the aura of well-being. “Eat well, sleep well, wash your hands, forgive all enemies.There’s more death on streets from people not wearing helmets, than people dying from Corona! So. I’m pouring out prayers to rinse the air around. Do it.“
Her spark has more fire than before.
Back home and just in the door, a new neighbor asks if we know a good doctor; I’m scared to ask why, while he chats on about persistent cold and weakness….
I admire this new – free of worry cousin Letti. And sigh, I miss her fanged zeal for disaster management. This new fearless woman makes me feel alone in my quest for remedies: I was hoping she’d have a solution to newspaper headlines everyday. I miss her WA group prayer ammunition and powders. She has too much peace, it is stilling: we’re supposed to be at least a little apprehensive?
(Um. Want to give to give him Letti’s advice but the words aren’t forming yet):
must meet Letti more often, her spirit is catching…
Our table seems to expand with every new person. I don’t know how they did it back then, we now are more conservative a Society. (Conservative as in : conserving on personal space/ sharing). We buffet, we carry bag/ take home. We have little side-table, collapsible ones too, with flaps down sides. Yes, but not my husband.
When we went shopping for the last table we bought and still have- by nothing but the sheer grace of God and all His angels specially trained to take care of homes like ours, … well he wanted a six seater glass table. It has a lower layer, frosted glass- but still glass.
I remember the day we bought it, at Powai, Mumbai; our third child was just in, a tiny gorgeous visually challenged cherub, but he would grow, and he would want to climb this thing. But Jeff wouldn’t listen. They’d learn, he said. Train them well, they’ll learn, learn how to take care of good things. How to be careful, not be rowdy around it.
I turned to the Salesman for mercy, but he was helplessly taken by my truly beloved’s passion for glass. “Ma’am, you can let your children sit on this table, even lie down, this is no mere glass, this is Italian …”
It stood on four seemingly- tender steel legs that looked feather light, I wasn’t convinced. But Jeff has these large brown amber eyes that seem to melt when he wants something badly and he wanted that table. Two years down we had to shift cities/states, my heart sank. India is no small country, our furniture went on Inter State highways and heaven & hell know how many bumps. Shashi our neighbor had wanted that table, Jeff wouldn’t hear of it.
When we unpacked and re-assembled it, it looked as good as new.
The tales this one can tell:
birthday cake cuttings with the kids’ friends falling at it till it swayed 70 degrees one birthday when there was a weak table-leg;
the times we prayed here, chatted, tried a new recipe, made cards, painted nails, made calls, talked into the night, lit candles, salvaged bouquets over a day old, got new lilies, fixed an old vase, lost spoons and found them later elsewhere, made new friends, got new plates and mats, re furnished our white backed chairs (Jeff wanted those white dining chairs too, fabulous as they look ~ fine steel rod backs in red brown wood frame, they are white, and this is not a small family, we love our paints and colors and crayons and tubes of acrylic….
Jeff re-furnished each chair recently, it all looks elegantly loved.
“They’ll learn,” he said, also persistently insisting on using our best glassware too. “Why not use it all now, we celebrate every time…”
“I’m keeping them for special occasions,” I sulk every Sunday. And every Sunday he takes every plate out, our best ware for the day that’s supposed to be treated sacred.
“What if they chip?”
He turns those eyes on me with, “They haven’t yet, if they do…we’ll have to get new ones.”
After all these years, I’m changing. I’m glad for the way this ‘Italian’ glass and white steel thing makes me feel, its glass lower layer with frosted rain drops, and white chairs. From a barely-anointed Clean-Bee, I’m turning into something unspeakable everyday, slowly, inch by inch, am getting addicted to cleaning accessories and mat decor. Nor worrying about it breaking anymore: unsure why.
Oh ok, it’s a She, and She’s still a beauty, a friend,
a family member that reminds us of the fragility of moments, and how quick and sheer life is, transient, yet resilient.
She reminds me to constantly dress up for one another, always treat each day as a cause for celebration. Funny, I never thought of her that way, till writing this. Never gave her a name, but then she’s each of us: breakable, and yet if treated with care, can still stand.
This photograph ‘Homeless woman‘, from Helen Cherry’s stunning Blog gazed at me all yesterday through Sunday dinner and warm sheets and bed; through our roof in pre-dawn mist and warm breakfast this morning. I can’t get her out of my hair. Her and the billions of Us, asking, asking, asking Questions in a Silence that’s growing. Growing in isolation.
In a country like mine, India, where 46 million people live under poverty line (2019, correct me if I’m wrong), begging is no unusual event but this Photograph from a London Street (thankyou Helen for your heart stilling Capture) stokes some more soul searching questions:
Global Questions steadily turning us to begging bowls, they’re steeping deeper with Time and lack of Space. Our questions morph into statements:
will there be rice enough for our farmers. Will there be rain. Will there be water. Will there be war, peace. Is there house enough for all. What makes poverty. Who can help the ‘poverty line’. Where does tax money go. Who is that person sitting on cardboard in the street. Is he/ she really a beggar. Why am I suspicious of everyone I don’t fully understand. Do I have a spare wardrobe I can share, a spare coin, a blanket, a meal. Can I be a friend to someone who’s homesick, needs a friend..
seriously, if one of us took note of one other person in genuine need, that’s half of 7 billion looking out for the other half.
How do we figure out genuine need: I’m pretty sure we are smart enough to decipher things like that.
In my corner of the earth, these things are highly shareable :
last year’s text books, story books, clothes/bags/shoes/a little pocket money, yes tricky/ a smile, trickier/ a phone call….😏 a prayer/ …. a shared meal, sheets I can part with, a blanket I don’t need...there’s a person that collects our newspapers and sells it, old books… how many rupees does he get from that? Oh so little, but it makes him happy. Last year this time, the good Lord (only He would/ could), put it on our hearts to cook Sunday lunch for anyone who’d fellowship with us…. I’m not a great cook and we don’t serve a lavish table, but we’ve watched a certain joy tiptoe in at our home. And it’s never left. We’ve received some great new friends, and its turning me into a whole strangely different person. I’ve received hugs and heart; received smiles like we didn’t know were there anymore; received healing and laughter. Received the courage to believe in humanity again. Watched some young lives stand tall, unbreak. Watched myself go from a recluse into a person who looked forward to meeting new faces. Watched new people pray for our sick son. Watched, heard, experienced the love of strangers turn my cold insides into a warmth I have no proper words for.
We live in an Age of Suspicion. It’s gotten so awry it’s real. A certain amount of suspicion is even good, but peer below the layer of fake and Con, and we may find some genuine people whom we can not only bless, but be blessed back by.
We were meant to live in these, these tough insane wildly hurtful times. We have this growing awareness in us, that probably our forefathers could not have had: an awareness of depleting resources and human understanding. We balk at politicians and global warming. We are well-read and clever. We know Theories and Consequences of War. We are efficient, highly informed and intelligent. We are frightened easily, hence careful, paranoid, terse, polite, warned. We feel deeply, so we write and poetise, paint, read, gripe. We who are so well endowed, are the cream of a global society that’s screaming for basics of heart soul, body mind. Not all of this is something Governments can easily provide. We are Social watchmen. We are our own DoorKeepers, and Guide. Who are we, we are Humans like never before. We are Teachers and Givers, Recipients…
but this :
we do not know how to Receive. Go to an Orphanage and receive a child’s hug. An old person’s smile. A Druggie’s tears. Spend 5 minutes / day just watching the street you pass everyday. Be an anonymous Burger donor. Anything. Just do it, Angel. Yes, you. Me. Tough, ofcourse. Aren’t you and I bone tired of being boring people, noses burrowed in our news: prophets of gloom. Watch a new smile spread in a brand new face all because of you. What a kick that is. Receive what you get when you bless another’s need.
A peasant, she who shares the street with rats and pillows of concrete? The feral cats from alley beats lick the food stuckto her feet. Day and night she hunts for eats, old clothes disposed become her sheets…..
….stop to greet a human drenched from summer’s heat and frozen by the winter’s sleet- a fate no woman dreamed she’d meet.…
This post inspired by Writing/Believing Sight Unseen‘s post about streets, so I said I’d have a go at my own streets around. He said he would look out for it so here goes 😅
I’m still not a Google map person, when people come home here in Bangalore, I tell them we’re the lane opposite the huge Banian tree complete with tap roots and birds yelling in it…. uh
past Bamboo shop man’s enclosure for new buildings coming up.
If they’re on a lane further down I must guide them left of CMR law college but which left, depending on which side they’re facing. If they’re facing my tree, then I’m on their left.
Owwwwgh! Which tree they ask, theres more than one tree here. I realise I don’t know location address. Postal address says Reddy layout. Google says I’m at Chingalingakua…..
but this is a post about streets around me,
I’ll try again. If I go out (forget people coming home for now)
if I turn left of my Banian tree, towards the Flyover, there’s the little uphill lane past Chemist and Bake,
past the Aquarium blue roof place(can’t remember name)
alongside two storeyed apartment where recently a biker still in red helmet, well he ran up those stairs to first floor but forgot his keys still in bike. He looks down, sees me, and with friendly grin, asks if I can get keys off his bike and throw it up at him….. that lane.
Go up that lane 2 minutes and seven or more trees to your left, (with cheeky monkey in them),
you get to the Ayyapa temple Cross, rich with people arriving and leaving off blue and white bus, red bus, auto rickshaw and car and bike. There’s a food stall, a toy shop and a garment store across, not to mention cheerful vegetable vendors in carts, they sell some of the best grapes I’ve ever had, wine coloured ones, they’ll stain your shirt if you’re not careful, that street junction
which breaks into a two way Flyover where I happened to get stranded, waiting for an auto rickshaw with my then 8 year old blind hyperactive son….that Flyover
leads to a larger location called JBnagar, aha we finally have a name!
Its been released! Asha– Journey of Hope, featuring my Cover and 8 paintings along with others’, in a slim back gorgeous Book that anyone anywhere might be intrigued by…
If you’ve ever been there, in the throes of trauma, you’ll feel this. The Paintings are perhaps personal windows, illustrating soul stirring Bible study Leads on the fact of Divine healing via the Gospel of John’s 7 “I Ams“. Written by some of our finest Contemporary Writers.
The above Paint theme* was inspired by the Song of Solomon, portrayed as the human spirit, now embedding in His Vineyard; Rejection is rejected.
Will post a Review shortly.
*Set me as a seal over Your heart:
I AM THE VINE, YOU THE BRANCHES. His Presence/His Acceptance and Divine Support.
Read on, for my personal footnote with above image of Vineyard painting, if you’re wondering what that handcuff is doing in a Vineyard, with Scarred hand….(not part of the book):
Reading the Gospel of John in the light of these themes is visiting a cellar deep within, for me. Familiar text and images merge as John’s chapters reach between lines and push boundaries between Seen and Unseen worlds. Blue-green vineyard violets seep like tears on canvas: Rejection is rejected;
the Word crowds my canvas with VINE as the palms of two people facing each other, rest – one being released of handcuff, the other with a scarlet Scar. I’m a whole new essence, a new Cask of outpour. For any of us with scarredidentities, Heaven signs that dotted line endorsing us as first citizens in the unshakeable kingdom of God. This is the permanent secure address of the Vineyard of Engedi (Song of Songs). Mathew Henry’s commentary on that book reads like a Song of Evangelism). Ezekiel’s’ River of God’ cleanses out Dead sea’s putrid En-Gedi Banks, turning it fertile! The whole Bible pieces together with the promise I AM THE VINE YOU ARE THE BRANCHES. ‘Set me as a seal over Your heart’ is today’s scream for God.
Will be posting more of Asha here, but truly excited about the impact of a Book like this one, Published purely for those of us hurting in silence.
The bio-dome hosted hundreds of butterfly …our 18 year old blind Joh was at peace, no aggression. We weren’t worrying about the things he couldn’t see, just grateful that his beautiful smile was back in this quiet place lush with flora. Post seizure meds’ aggression had reared its ugly head the past months, holding our gentle perfect son hostage.
Today life is getting better: piecing back together under a Force that held us. Negativity fades like long shadows of dusk as I look at Rochelle’s Prompt and the gentle Reminder that we are all still being held together …
Today I woke up with an absence of pain in the area they call heart. As I write this Joh gives me another smile, but wider. I’m fumbly with wonder. It’s been a long year of post seizure med reactions erggghhh! There were days we couldn’t even pray or smile. This morning, gratitude gushes. I’ve not enough words. A smile is the heartprint of wellbeing, thankyou for this Prompt Trent. You put it so well; here I’m incoherent, gawking at peace. God bless y’all. Sometimes you lose it deep, bad. And sometimes you just plain hold on to what Held you all this time. Words fall back dumb founded when a storm ceases and you breathe again, for the smile of a loved one healing. Joh is 18, his gentleness returns slowly. As I write this he’s holding my hand, what can I say – life is worth all the bad moments for the Joy it delivers. 😅
Hey, did something make you smile today?
My last Post: Saturday’s child was with an old photograph taken in my years when Joh was at Blind School. He’s since moved and is now homeschooled (hates that word and we’ve had to stop all forms of academy since the past year and half). So we just be. He loves going out, shopping, oh even doodling when he can be still. Big foodie. Loves people, remembers every single ones birthdays; shopkeepers, oh anyone. We’ve wondered what kind of job our 18 yr old would really like, and I think it’s this: he’d love a world desk with everyone’s birthdays registered, just to call and wish them! I’m serious. Maybe it must happen.
I prayed that you would be given the gift of sight,
but God in His mercy allowed me to see His Light all around you.
Now I ask that you my child will pray too, this prayer for others: that thru’ your journey via the valley of shadows, you will leave footprints that lead another out of darkness.
Each day this prayer grows, and as it does, my eyes open to things I’ve been blind to. How we misunderstand the gifts we are given: they arrive in unusual wrap and bows, sparkling with the tears of heaven.
“For God has not given us a spirit of timidity, but He has given us a spirit of power, love and discipline…” quote from The Bible.